Quote Monday

So I happened upon my insights page and compared what I’ve done this year (so far) to the three years prior and the results are dismal. The first year I really took to blogging, I posted 164.  The next year, which saw a great increase of interaction with the outside world, I posted only 112.  Then last year, I posted 118.  Can you imagine with my lulls of inactivity where I might be sitting this year?

21.

Yep.  21 posts (now 22) in seven months.  ((sigh))  Wow.

If those are the results of my blogging, I don’t even want to know what that might mean for my writing.

I set goals for myself at the beginning of the year (last year had proven productive, for the most part), and I wanted to keep that enthusiasm going.  I’m now reevaluating those goals as I’m certain I’m going to fall short at the rate I’m crawling.

How did this happen?!

I may need to reevaluate a few other things as well.  I saw this quote and decided it may be the best way to get motivated again.

NotAPriority

What are your motivational/goal achieving tricks?

What To Do In The In-Between Time

IdeaLightBulb(jeffbullassite)Draft after draft.  Rewrite after rewrite.  Sometimes it feels like all we’re doing is writing in circles.

When you need a break from your beloved, it’s hard to decide what to do in that downtime.  I know I’m usually at a loss.  I try to find a new story idea, or consider rewriting one of my other screenplays, but sometimes you just need to do different work for the same story.

Bang2Write is a great resource for writers, and if you aren’t subscribing to Lucy V Hay’s site, as a screenwriter I would recommend it.  I have found loads of truly useful information, like the following – 7 Useful Things You Can Do Between Drafts.

Using my sci-fi pilot, The Demeter as an example, I’ll go through the steps and show you what I’m thinking about in my own downtime.

  1. Compare/Contrast to “Like” stories – Like the Doctor of Doctor Who, I want my human protagonist to not hold any immediate prejudice because of what an alien might look like (although easier said than done. We humans scare easily.).  The video game Mass Effect inspired the idea behind the human/alien interactions and romance options.  It’s unlike shows such as Firefly because not all the characters are human and not all stories are about human problems.  Star Wars and Star Trek are obvious go-tos, but other than the military connection, which won’t be overly used until season 2, I want to stay away from any ideas influenced by either.
  2. Think it Over – The pilot needs to foreshadow more of the ideas I have for the first season.  In addition to a different opening scene, I need to show the “shady” nature of the ship’s captain so the viewer is unsure for some time whether or not he can be trusted.  Early feedback suggested I integrate an image of where the show “might” go aka Battlestar Galactica always showed Earth as the final destination.  Where do I want the show to go?
  3. Work on Craft – Feedback also recommended I adjust the pacing.  Determine the best course to improve this.
  4. Make Contacts – Besides social media…think outside the box on making contact with those in the industry – Meetups, retreats (within reason), writer’s groups?
  5. Feedback – Build relationships of give and take.  Giving feedback will help my writing as well.  Get back on Zoetrope.
  6. Submission Strategy – I’m already using a calendar to keep track of contest deadlines, but could be better arranged for the whole year.  FilmFreeway is a good resource to use more fully.  Get more than one script ready for submission.
  7. Nothing.  Relax…for a minute. 😉

I hope you find this information as useful as I did.  Happy Writing!

What Happens in Vegas Gets Blogged

Ladies night out.

In Vegas this is not an unusual occurrence.  There were at least 4 brides-to-be among the crowd.  But for me, well, that’s another story.  This is how it all began…

A young lady at work asks, “What are you doing Thursday night?”

I answer sort of skeptically because generally, I’m a flake, “This Thursday?  Nothing?  Why?”

“Wanna see some half naked men?”

I blink.  “Uh, yeah.”

Thunder

The ladies in our events department were given free tickets to the Thunder from Down Under.  For those of you unfamiliar with the show, it’s like Chippendales, with accents.  Well-muscled men dance and flex and pretty much tease the crowd into a frenzy of handsy, screaming, lose your inhibitions (mostly) women.

It’s a good time.

We ended up at what now seems like a strategically placed table, and for some reason The Sis and I ended up at the front of it.  In the line of fire, so to speak.  So it really should come as no surprise, but totally did, that for the first “grab a woman and drag her up on stage” moment, I was chosen.

Uh oh.

The seasoned dancer, “Alexander” was a big and burly guy with a full man beard, and was thankfully as tall as I was.  (You’ll understand why this is important later.)  Many of the other guys were quite slight in comparison.  He spun me around and made gestures that made the women squeal.  It was all a blur except for one thought, “Heels, don’t fail me now!”

He tells me to “relax”.

All right.  I know I’m at a show that induces women to forget themselves, and asks them to check their reserve at the door, but at this point, I had only had one drink.  And I’m half English.  This is about as relaxed as you, Alexander, are gonna get.

He sits me in a swivel chair and continues to dance, thrust, and gesture.  I’m like a deer in the headlights, not quite sure what to do.  I try to find my friends beyond the blinding light, and I can see hints of them waving their arms and screaming in encouragement.

I decide to ham it up.

I’m uncomfortable, and am one of those girls who would rather make conversation than feel them up.  This is their job.  Yes, they’re gorgeous, and sexy, and have accents, but do I really want to slide my hands up and down their sweaty flesh in front of a bunch of strangers?!  Well, when I put it that way…

No!

He tells me to relax, again.

I kind of what to yell at him that I am.

Another blur of seconds pass, and he tells me to hold on tight.  Ah, crap.  He’s going to attempt to pick me up.  And he does.  (At 6 feet tall, this is a huge bonus as pretty much everyone I know is unable to do this.  I swoon a little inside.)  I think I had my eyes squeezed tight out of fear, and clung onto him like a baby monkey, so it came as a surprise when he laid me down upon the stage.

More dancing happens.  All I can hear are the women screaming.  I’m sort of shell shocked.

He flips me over onto my stomach and I pose.  The ladies laugh.  After a few more moves, it’s over.  My heels are still a burden as he helps me up and embraces me in a sweaty hug and kisses my cheek.  I think I thanked him.  For what I’m not sure.  The memories?

He helps me navigate the stairs, because I’m both unnerved and embarrassed, and I fall back into my seat desperate for my drink.

My friends love the whole thing.  Later in the ladies room, I hear some of the women talking about me.  One of them tells me I should’ve taken more advantage of Alexander.  I kind of laugh it off, but I’m reassured by the fact that none of the other women taken up on stage did any groping either.

Maybe it’s that thing of having the spotlight on you when you haven’t sought it out.  You’re not prepared, you’re unsure.

Overall, it was a memorable evening.  There was a lot of laughter and I bonded with some of the ladies I work with.  The next day it was THE topic of discussion.  They had told everyone.  Even the GM had a few jokes for me.

So, you might be wondering what this has to do with anything I normally talk about here…well, the dancer sort of looked like a Dragon Age character, or two. 😉  He’s the third from the left, but I’m intrigued by the Chris Evans look-a-like who was sadly absent that evening.  Also, as the name of my blog suggests, I have a terrible memory, so what happens not only in Vegas, but anywhere really, goes viral, as a reminder. 😉

Writing Prompt #104

Yes, it’s been awhile.

I have a couple of things to share with you this week, but first, let’s get back to writing!  This amazing piece is by Pascal Campion, an artist I’ve pinned a number of times, and from the first moment I saw it, I was sort of smitten.

Tougher than the rest (campion)

It actually gives me an idea for my tv series, so maybe I’ll write about that for this challenge.  What does it inspire in you?

Happy Writing!

Quote of the Week

PassionIgnore the working out aspect of this quote (unless you’re also into that) and think on what the words mean.  Where do you spend this kind of energy?

Is it on your writing (or other form of art)?

I know I don’t always put such passion into my work, as any artist knows, not all days encourage such intensity of emotion, but most days, we should have it.

As a “yet to be professional” screenwriter, I’m passionate about everything I write because they are the stories I want to tell.  It’s my hope, in time, I will have the opportunity to feel this same intensity on a professional level.  Because if we’re not passionate about our art, then why are we doing it?

It’s a thankless path for the most part, well, at least until we “make it”.  It’s hard and it’s lonely and nobody cares about our struggles – their concern is for the final result, so we have to have passion.

I spoke with a fellow writer once who wanted to give up.  They hadn’t had any success and just didn’t feel the drive to continue.  My advice was to take a break and see if they missed it.  Like a relationship, which is pretty much what it is, a little perspective via distance can help a great deal.  Hopefully, a little time away will reignite the fire, but if not, they won’t waste any more precious time on something that doesn’t spark such emotion.

Because I believe that this is something we all want to find – something that drives us, something that we’re willing to give up sleep for, and let our minds wander off to…

So tell me.  What are you passionate about write now? 😉

Where Did May Go?!

Goodness.  Visiting my site and finding that the last post was back in April makes me feel like quite the lazy blogger.  Eek!  It’s June!  Not a single post in May?!  Now, I know I’ve been busy with the new job (no routine, weird hours), but I wasn’t compelled to share anything that happened last month?  Shameful.

cher

So I suppose I have to do a “look back” type post in order to remember years down the road from now what happened.

  1. The new job is among one of the best jobs in the service industry I’ve had.  There are great people to work with, there’s variety in the work, and the compensation is top notch!  I finally have a savings account..what a wonderful feeling.
  2. The new car is lovely again after a major accident that involved six cars after only a month of having her (not our fault).  She’s back in pristine condition, and I have to say, I made a great choice.  She’s getting a Dragon Age themed nickname because she’s a tank.  She took the hit like a champ. 😉
  3. The Sis and I got geek inspired sister tattoos. It My DA Tattoowas not a hurt I wish to endure again any time soon (even though I still have a few finishing touches needed), but in the end, worth it.  Yes, Dragon Age is a part of it because, of course!
  4. I took a small jaunt back to LA.  It was my first time on a plane in like five years, and it was the very first time I had ever been away from my furbabies overnight.  I need to use this newfound monetary-rewarding job to get out more often!
  5. My TV pilot finished in the finals of one contest, so I entered a couple more.  ((Crossing fingers))
  6. I finished the final in-canon chapters of the Dragon Age fanfic.  Finally.  I’d like to say I can move on, but now I have all those non-canon stories to tell.  ((Sigh))

I think that about covers it.

So, how are you?  I’ve missed you all, and will do my best to not let such a lapse occur again.  Anything exciting to share?

Wishing you all the best!

Writing Prompt #103

It’s Earth Day!  In her honor I was trying to find an image that spoke of her beauty and variety, but as I scrolled through images, I was reminded that no matter what mark we hope to leave upon her, she’ll always take it back.

cottage

Happy Writing!

Quote of the Week

A couple of weeks ago, I discovered that I had not placed in the top of the last contest I had entered.  I was excited to have advanced at all, let alone make it to the finals, but I was still disappointed – to get so close.  Ah well.  It’s time to move beyond this latest round and look forward.

Easier said than done.

It was a huge boost to my (writer’s) ego to get that bit of validation, but now here I am again, starting at square one.  I have that tune in my head, “second verse, same as the first”.  Creatives have a tough gig.  So I was trying to find a quote this week that speaks to those of us who continue to try, despite the odds, because passion dictates that we do.

I present the following:

Churchill-Success

Yes, this is a quote that most likely relates to a world war, but the message can be applied to anyone who continues to strive towards their goal.  It is my hope that we all do!

Best Wishes and Happy Writing!

Rambling Review: Logan

Logan3I haven’t done a review in ages!  And instead of being overly late to the party (like I usually am), as this movie is still in theaters, I thought I’d give this one a shout out.

I try my best to only watch a trailer or two of any film I’m interested in seeing.  I don’t read other reviews, I don’t seek out spoilery information, and I try to ignore social media posts (which is almost a permanent state at this point, as I’m always behind in everything), so I didn’t know too much about what to expect from this movie before viewing it.

I haven’t finished the Wolverine film series, or even the newer X-Men films, so I’m uncertain to any tie-ins, but this definitely felt like a stand alone film and didn’t require much explanation as to what had been happening up to this point.

Side note, I went to see this by myself.  I like going to the movies once in a while on my own, but clearly this was a shock to the two men seated near me.  “You’re here alone?” One of them asked.  “Yes.”  I responded.  “You came to see Logan by yourself?”  “Yep.”  I heard him sort of huff in surprise.  I didn’t pay enough attention to the accent to narrow down where they were from, but clearly this was a strange idea to them.  I’m not sure if it was because I was lone woman, or because I was a lone woman at a superhero movie.

At the conclusion, he asked if I liked it.  Yes.  Yes, I did.

*I like to write reviews as if I were talking with a friend, so I try my best to keep them spoiler free. 🙂

Logan2

As I said, I didn’t know much about the film before entering the theater.  The fantastic pairing of Johnny Cash on the trailer was enough to spark my interest, especially with Logan looking so weathered and forlorn.  He looked like a man whose age had finally caught up with him; a man who has seen a great deal and lost just as much.

The film is set in the not too distant future, and we’re introduced to a Logan who is clearly unwell, whose claws are getting a little rusty, has a limp, and is drinking himself into oblivion.  The strong warrior doesn’t appear to have much fight left in him, and becomes a reluctant protector of a young girl with similar powers.  And I do mean reluctant.

Mutants have gone the way of the dinosaur, and Logan is looking out for himself and the Professor, who is now in his 90s and unable to control his powers due to seizures.  Apparently there was an incident that killed a number of people and mutants in the recent past, and Logan is doing his best to keep him safe and protected.  He just wants to earn enough money to buy a boat and escape to a quiet life – enter the bad guys who think they’re good guys.

There’s been a secret project going on for years, because there’s always a secret project, and when the lab rats get loose, the big guns come out in force to clean up their mistake.  And do they ever come out in force.  There are loads of great fight sequences – Logan’s claws are still as sharp as ever, and we discover, so are the little girl’s, and she’s a dangerous little thing.

The movie is about both a literal and figurative “journey”.  Logan has lost everyone he’s ever cared about, save Charles, and he doesn’t want to care about anyone else, no matter how she might tug at the ol’ heart strings.  He’s not who he once was, and he’s not who everyone wants him to be, he’s just…tired, of it all.

The film took some unexpected turns, but honestly, they felt right.  It wasn’t a traditional spandex-clad superhero film, and I think that’s what I liked best.  It was a more “reality” based look at an old hero and what they, or any of us, are willing to fight for.

There was one aspect of the storyline that I felt was a little forced in, and a cliche of sorts – the whole white hats vs black hats kind of thing, facing yourself, and your past, but as parallels go, it wasn’t too bad.  *This one is hard to go into too much explanation without being spoilery. 

This is my second favorite X-Men film, after the first one back in 2000, and probably number 6 on my top 10 of superhero movies.  It wasn’t what I was expecting, and that was a good thing.  All the X-Men movies of late have not inspired me to care about any of these characters I once liked.  Remember the X-Men cartoon?  The writers, directors, etc. really should have taken a note from their predecessors.

You don’t have to be a superhero fan to enjoy this film.  It’s a tale we’re all familiar with, it just happens to be “enhanced”. 😉

4.5 stars.jpg

If you’ve seen Logan, what did you think?